Tag Archives: ultra-micro economics

Opinion: Small plus small plus small equals BIG

ultra-micro economicsIn the heady days of the Thatcher government, when the hideous mistakes of Big Bang were being forged and coming to fruition, I used to run an excellent magazine called Town & Country Planning.  In those days, we were extremely exercised by the idea of the huge and mounting cost of rundown private sector homes. Who was going to repair them?

We don’t talk about that problem any more. This is not because it was ever exactly solved, but because of one of the more benevolent effect of rising house prices, before the oligarchs came in, was that it made a bit of DIY worthwhile. Instead of the government shelling out to repair all those privately-owned dwellings, the young owners went down to B&Q and bought a paintbrush.

It was a lesson to me that neither the conventional public sector nor the conventional private sector may be best placed to tackle the really intractable problems.  And it makes me wonder whether the great unanswered questions about rebalancing the economy might eventually be answered – not by the long night of the soul as we wait for the Treasury, but by the places themselves.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 5 Comments
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  • User AvatarJoe Bourke 21st Feb - 1:02am
    Ian, I expect the conclusions of the committee will not be so different to those of Nick Harvey in Liberator magazine. He wrote: "The most...
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    Ian: I cannot disagree with your first point, agreeing to an election did require some naive assumptions about Farage and the Brexit party. However your...
  • User AvatarPeter Watson 20th Feb - 10:57pm
    @TCO "No, TCO is referring to independent research " No, TCO is referring to an article in The Independent then misrepresenting a quote from the...
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  • User AvatarMary Reid 20th Feb - 10:29pm
    @Cllr Mark Wright - interesting point. Thank you.
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    TCO -As you hide behind anonymity I have no idea what your experience of running elections is (for my part I ran my first in...